Lucia Meraz-Arreola is charged with the baby’s death on Christmas Eve
A 45-year-old woman from Topeka, Kansas, is facing a child molestation case several months after a 15-year-old boy allegedly murdered a little girl on Christmas Eve.
According to the Topeka Police Department, Lucia Meraz-Arreola is charged with serious endangerment of a child and an unidentified 15-year-old boy is charged with first-degree murder, second-degree murder, child molestation and serious endangerment of a child in the death of an infant on March 24. December 2022. Investigators said they received a call on Christmas Eve after the child stopped breathing at an apartment building on SE Echo Ridge in Topeka.
The baby died in the hospital.
“In the course of the investigation conducted by investigators from the Topeka Police Department and the Shawnee County Coroner’s Office, the death was ruled a manslaughter,” police officers said.
Police arrested both suspects on Monday, who they described as “known persons”.
Authorities have not explained how the teenager and Meraz-Arreola are linked; They also did not specify whose child the victim was.
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Cops said the teenager was being held in a Shawnee County juvenile detention center on the above charges. Shawnee County Department of Justice records verified by Law&Crime show that Lucia Meraz-Arreola (listed alias: Lucia Meraz-Arriola) was arrested Monday at 7:05 p.m. local time. Records Tuesday afternoon said Meraz-Arreola was listed as out of custody and that she was released from prison. Law&Crime has followed up the prison and has confirmed that the defendant is no longer in custody.
Under Kansas law, aggravated child endangerment — a Level 9 personal crime — occurs when a person “knowingly and unreasonably” causes or allows a child “to be placed in a situation where the life, body, or… the health of the child may be endangered” or causes or allows a child to be in a drug-contaminated environment. Kansas law also allows 15-year-old minors to be prosecuted as adults if prosecutors show “good cause” to do so — and an “off-grid” crime case like this would fit that bill. It remains to be seen if the state will go down that route, but if the teen is charged as an adult, he would be identified from that point forward.
The victim was not identified by name or age, and authorities have said nothing about a cause of death or a possible motive.
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https://lawandcrime.com/crime/child-endangerment-suspect-out-on-bond-after-15-year-old-boy-is-accused-of-murdering-baby-girl-on-christmas-eve/ Lucia Meraz-Arreola is charged with the baby’s death on Christmas Eve